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A South African company injects R55 billion into Lupane gas


Daniel Nemukuyu, Harare
Admiral Mining Company Tumagole Consortium said it is committed to invest $ 55 billion in the Lupan coal mining project.

Officials of the Tumagole Consortium, led by Mfakam Mbete, Ambassador of South Africa to Zimbabwe, paid a courtesy call to Vice President Constantin Chiwengo yesterday.

The company, which started to work on a gas project on a non-binding contract, said that if it gets a binding contract, it invests more in Zimbabwe.

Ambassador Mbete told reporters after a meeting that his country is interested in signing mining contracts with Zimbabwe.

"The purpose of the meeting was to discuss with Vice-President Chiwenge possible further investment with Zimbabwe in the mining sector.

"Today we brought a company named Tumagole Consortium, where we meet the vice president, and they are in the mining industry," he said.

Natural gas reserves have been discovered in Lupane-Lubimbi, Matabeleland North, a few decades ago, but commercial use has not occurred.

Reconnaissance and pilot production have been conducted since then, and it has been proven that this resource can be used commercially for domestic and industrial use.

Representative of the Tumagole consortium Thapelo Tshephe said his company is ready to enter up to $ 55 billion in the Lupane gas project.

He said the company intends to invest R100 million in the first two years.

"It is a very good project if we could get a binding contractual agreement. In the next two years, we will be able to develop at least R100 million over the next two years, although the total investment is about 55 billion euros.

"We already have commitments from the South African banks, and we will also get technical support from large companies like Sassol," he said.

Mr. Tshephe said that Tumagole had already begun work on the project in anticipation of a binding contract.

"The meeting with VP Chiwenge was in line with the CBM project in Lupane, we have done some work, but we now need a binding treaty," said Mr. Tshephe.

"We will be able to supply gas to nine neighboring countries, helping Zimbabwe to become independent in terms of electricity and gas supplies."

Ambassador Mbete said that Zimbabwe and South Africa are in talks on how to strengthen cooperation in all areas of development.

"The talks began in late December, on a day of struggle, between the finance ministers of both countries and the governors of both reserve banks.

"The talks concerned possible cooperation between the two countries, and it is important to realize that ministers and governors met following the instructions of both presidents.

"The talks are sensitive and very strategic, so we will keep the world and the media informed of progress, and they are so sensitive that they are only at ministerial level," he said.

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